Originally an exclusive Amazon release in the UK, the Auchentoshan Sauvignon Blanc Finish is now available in Singapore via The Whisky Distillery.
Wine cask finishing is getting increasingly common in the whisky world; it seems like every other whisky released in recent years has employed cask finishing in wine barrels in its making.
Not familiar with the technique? Essentially, cask finishing is a secondary process that sees whisky already matured in one type of barrel get transferred into a different barrel type for further aging. It allows the whisky to develop further complexity, gaining a new set of flavours it otherwise normally wouldn’t have.
Yet the Auchentoshan Sauvignon Blanc Finish will raise some eyebrows.
Whisky is traditionally matured or finished in barrels that once held stronger fortified wines. Sherry (especially intensely sweet Pedro Ximénez and Oloroso) in particular, and also port.
But dry white wines? Those aren’t quite so common.
Introduced in 2019 in the UK, this limited edition release sees the lowland distillery take spirit first aged in bourbon casks to mature in wine barriques that once held Sauvignon Blanc wine. And not just any Sauvignon Blanc. Auchentoshan specifically sourced their barrels from Bordeaux to produce this unique expression.
But those of us who know wine will know that Bordeaux doesn’t typically make single varietal Sauvignon Blanc; dry Bordeaux Blanc is generally a blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon (Pessac Leognan, in particular, is known for producing some fabulous examples of this style).
In any case, the extra finish infuses a zingily fresh and fruity note to Auchentoshan’s triple-distilled spirit. Interestingly the Auchentoshan Sauvignon Blanc Finish also comes in at 47% ABV, which is higher than usual. The higher proof works. It intensifies the whisky’s bright citrus and sweet apple notes, and helps to lengthen the finish as well.
Auchentoshan recommends that this be served chilled. “We set out to create a never-seen-before whisky on the market. Auchentoshan Sauvignon Blanc was crafted to be enjoyed chilled, allowing us to innovate on the key occasions when the product is shared,” shared Ron Welsh, Master Blender for Auchentoshan, when this whisky was first released.
The Auchentoshan Sauvignon Blanc Finish is priced at S$218 and will be available from The Whisky Distillery from end-August 2022.
Auchentoshan Sauvignon Blanc Finish (Official Tasting Notes)
Colour: Pale gold
Nose: Subtle citric notes of white grapefruit with light sweetness of white peaches and green apple, light perfume of eglantine, honeysuckle, Scotch broom and jasmine.
Palate: Lightly peppery with zesty notes, green grapes, light acacia honey and lemon curd, vanilla sweetness, lychees and honeydew melon, but also dried grass and hay notes.
Finish: The finish is hot and peppery with lingering notes of custard apple with a salty mouthfeel.
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